Porn-production moratorium lifted week after positive HIV test

An adult-film trade group has lifted an industry-wide moratorium on porn production that was prompted by an actress' positive HIV test.

Free Speech Coalition, a Canoga Park-based trade association for the porn industry, called for the moratorium a week ago, the Los Angeles Times reported. The group said Wednesday that it lifted the moratorium late Tuesday and that filming could resume.

The group said that all performers who worked with the affected actress, Cameron Bay, were tested and cleared and that a panel of three doctors concluded that it was safe to resume filming

Any performer who has tested clean since Aug. 19 is "safe and available to work," the group said.

A medical advisory council for the industry is expected this week to consider increasing the frequency of required tests for cast members to at least once every 14 days. Currently, tests are required at least once every 28 days.

The most recent previous porn-industry moratorium related to a sexually transmitted disease was implemented in August 2012 as a result of a syphilis outbreak.

A previous HIV scare that shut down adult film production in 2011 turned out to be a false alarm. After a weeklong filming moratorium, the performer involved was retested, with a negative result.

In 2010, performer Derrick Burts tested positive and went on to become an advocate of requiring condom use in porn productions.

Last week's moratorium came in the midst of an ongoing legal battle over a measure passed by Los Angeles County voters last year requiring adult film actors to wear condoms on set.

Adult film producers Vivid Entertainment and Califa Productions, together with performers Kayden Kross and Logan Pierce, sued the county in January to prevent implementation of the law.

After the county declined to defend it, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation advocacy group stepped in as an “intervenor.” The plaintiffs tried unsuccessfully to get the group removed from the case.

Earlier this month, a U.S. district judge found that the condom requirement did not violate the 1st Amendment right to free speech, but the judge imposed restrictions on how the rule can be enforced. Among other things, the judge barred inspections of adult-film sets without search warrants.

Vivid has appealed the ruling on the 1st Amendment issue. A county Department of Public Health spokesman said the agency is evaluating how to enforce the regulation in light of the judge's ruling.

-- Abby Sewell, Los Angeles Times

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